On November 13, 2017, the DAYO Lightning Track and Field Team embarked upon its first indoor season. The lightning track team started in the spring of 2011, the brainchild of a discussion on a bus ride home from a Pee Wee Trojan football game. Shortly thereafter, it became a part of the Danbury Youth Athletic Organization (DAYO), a 501(c)3 Nonprofit organization. Coaches and team parents volunteer out of love for sports and a desire to positively impact the lives of our youth.
Since inception, our focus has been to develop our athletes’ skill at the most opportune time. We consider age and physical development and adjust our workouts accordingly. This helps to lock in very important form and technique at a young age. We work hard at getting better and having fun doing so. Our athletes are taught early on that hard work and dedication will always yield great returns.
Some coaches of other sports encourage athletes to join our team to develop speed and or endurance to accelerate their skills for sports such as soccer, basketball, football and lacrosse.
We encourage all athletes to do their best. Usually, when people hear track and field, they often focus on the track part and forget about the field. For those athletes who think they aren’t very fast or have endurance, they might be strong. They might be able to throw a javelin, disc or shotput far, or jump higher or farther. These throwers and jumpers are often needed to help the team score points which could be the difference in winning or losing a championship.
We have a good relationship, and talk with the coaches at surrounding high schools because we want our training to complement theirs. Many of the Lightning athletes move on with the necessary skills to have an immediate impact on their high school team as first-year students. Some go on to compete in D-I and D-II colleges and universities on scholarship. Some DAYO Lightning alumni are currently competing at Bethune Cookman University, Boston University, Southern CT State University, University of Connecticut and Villanova University, to name a few.
Most of our coaches have been a part of the program since the inception. Some have run track in high school and/or college or hold USA Track and Field Level I Certification. We believe that we train our athletes in a way that gives them the very best opportunity to compete at the highest level. Our hope is that it results in scholar athletes attending some of the best universities in the country.
The coaching staff for this indoor season will include Walter Gunter, Darren Joseph, Michael Scappaticci and Hubert Parris. Team Parents are Catrina Watson and Christine Bonansinga.
This article was written by Estela Camacho, Danbury Athletic Youth Organization (DAYO) secretary. For more information, visit www.dayosports.com, or contact Estela at 203-530-2457 or Bestelacamacho@sbcglobal.net.